>When I lived in northern New South Wales, I used to take my little Jack Russell, Rosie, for a walk and let her head where she wanted. As often as not I would come across something that inspired a piece of artwork. On this particular occasion, she led me to a wooden staff which I took home and pondered on for quite a long time.
Then I decided to create a wand to honour my ancestral lineage, my family of this lifetime and the friends I’ve encountered who have enriched my life. This wand lasted our travels to Victoria and then here to the mid-north coast of NSW. Then I knocked it one day and the top fell off. I was trying to fix it when my husband suggested I create another one. Hmmm, lateral thinking. In the time since I’d created the wand my father had passed into spirit, and I’d gone through quite a few changes.
So one day I decided to take a walk in the Nature Park near here, the driving force for which was a local Aboriginal Elder. I love this little park as you feel you’ve entered a sacred space when you walk in. The sounds of traffic die away, it’s very peaceful and you can feel nature and Aboriginal Elder spirits around you.
So I had the intention of finding a suitable piece of wood for a staff, but didn’t find anything which spoke to me. Until I got lost on the way back to the entrance. It’s actually quite hard to get lost in this park as it’s quite small, but I – with the assistance of the unseen world – managed this major feat. As I stumbled along and eventually found the entrance, I also came across just the right piece of wood to create a fresh Elder Wand.
I can assure you that this Elder wand is not like the Elder wand of the Harry Potter series. It’s a celebration of life, death, renewal, regeneration, and building one’s life on the shoulders of those who’ve gone before. I did create the wand a while back and did a post about it. But today I felt the need to re-visit it, as I didn’t feel that I’d quite finished it and was a bit tired and rushed when I’d last worked with it.
So here’s a pic of the wand in its entirety:
Here’s what’s on it:
My mother’s wedding ring; a small locket with “Mother” on which I gave my mother some time between 6-9 years of age and which I found in her jewellery case after she’d died; my grandfather’s watch chain; a pouch of scented pot-pourri which I made at a healers’ conference and which reminds me of the family of healers; my rosary beads from my First Communion when I attended a Catholic Convent from age 6-11; a brooch of a Welsh dragon to represent my Welsh ancestry; a talisman with a photo of Jesus inside (now very moth-eaten) which I got as a Christmas present from the Convent when I was about 6 (both these my mother kept for me and brought with her when she and Dad migrated to Australia a few years after my move here); a band of red wool ribbon which represents life and grounding here on earth; a band of plaited ribbons which was given to my daughter in remembrance of friendship and which she gifted to me.
This pic is of the top half of my Elder Wand. At the top is a kookaburra feather as Kookaburra is one of my totems; a Turquoise stone which is for the light of spiritual truth, and a white feather from a Sulphur Crest cockatoo (a memento of my time in Woodenbong, on the rim of an ancient volcano. In the middle is a piece of coral from Scottshead Beach as a remembrance of scattering my parents’ ashes there in the sea.
There’s also: a fascimile of a spider, as a spider is also one of my totems; and a Crow wing, from a crow we found which had just been killed on the road from Bowraville to the Pacific Highway. I picked up the crow and took it home, thanked it for the gift of its wings, then wrapped its body in newspaper, blessed it and placed it in our recycling bin. I would have asked Bryan to bury it for me but he’s buried a couple of bird bodies so far for me, and I really didn’t want to push my luck!
I have also added three rainbow-coloured ribbons which I bought recently from an Aura-Soma festival at a mind, body, spirit festival. These ribbons remind me of the rainbows which light our lives.
But also at the base is a small rainstick, which to me represents the fact that rain does fall in our lives, but when we learn from challenging experiences and work our way through grief and sadness, we are all the richer for experiencing the rain because then we can treasure the rainbows. The turquoise ribbon signifies that we learn to communicate with love when we learn life’s lesson and realise the power of love. The blue ribbon signifies the power of emotion and its enrichment of our lives as we open emotionally and speak from our hearts and souls.
In the middle is a large stone which called to me when I was visiting a friend’s property near here. Again, it’s a place of great energy, and I was told that it was a place of Aboriginal Elder history and significance. When I brought the stone home, I felt drawn to paint it as shown, and I think it’s to do with my life and a bringing together of the maternal and paternal lineages which I’ve inherited and embodied in my own life here on Mother Earth, as I’ve also learned to be my own woman wearing my own soul skin.
And to wind up, here’s a pic of the bottom half of my Elder Wand:
I do feel that an Elder Wand is something you can create when you actually get a call to embrace the process of making one. It represents a certain stage in your life when you are drawing together the threads of your life to honour the past, honour your life and then turn towards the future to honour the energy of embracing the new in your life.